My name is Leeann. I'm an addict and I have been clean since 12/24/1982.
I was twenty three and chronic alcoholic by the age of twenty one. I started drinking at age 17. The first time I drank, I blacked out and was sexually assaulted. I tried couple attempts at treatment. I drank and used codeine to avoid feelings and it allowed me to interact with others.
The problems with drugs and alcohol is it created problems and situations that I couldn't control. I drank with people I didn't like or wouldn't associate with when sober. I drank daily and would wreck my car and lost many jobs. I just walked off jobs. I was a chronic type of drinker and once I started, I didn't stop until I exhausted all options. I drank and used from age 17 1/2 to 23. I went to recovery support meetings and would have brief periods of abstinence.
Then in December 1982, I surrendered my addiction and started working 12 steps of recovery. It wasn't easy back then; most people getting clean were a lot older.?It was a miracle I made it to my first year, then two and next thing you know I've been clean 30 years.
I changed my life, my choices and my thinking. I accepted I was an addict and I couldn't use chemicals. I don't miss it anymore, the early years were hard. I made it harder on myself -- you have to change playgrounds, playmates and playthings.
I eventually became an addictions counselor and worked for 13 years. I turned my life around and helped others. I worked with criminal population and felt they were most difficult but was very rewarding. I still attend recovery support meetings. I have some friends today that I have had for at least 28 years. I learned that to keep my recovery I have to give back.
So if you don't think you can do it, just try for today.
One hour or one minute at a time. ?
It works when you work at it. Put as much effort into staying straight as you did at getting high. Ask others for help.?Good luck on the road to recovery.
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